The Washington Post has the scoop on ... its own sale. In an indulgently long report, the paper reveals it will be sold to Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos for $250 million in cash, after 80 years of ownership by the Graham family. The Post reports that its operating revenue has declined 44% over the past six years, and circulation is down 7% this year. "The Post could have survived under the company’s ownership and been profitable for the foreseeable future," says CEO Donald Graham. "But we wanted to do more than survive. I’m not saying this guarantees success but it gives us a much greater chance of success."
Along with the Post and its website, Bezos also gets the Express, the Gazette newspapers, the Fairfax County Times, the Spanish-language El Tiempo Latino newspaper, and the Robinson Terminal production plant. Bezos says he doesn't have a "worked-out plan" to reinvigorate the paper, but is willing to experiment. "There would be change with or without new ownership," says Bezos, who should take sole ownership within 60 days. "But the key thing I hope people will take away from this is that the values of the Post do not need changing. The duty of the paper is to the readers, not the owners." Despite Bezos' day job, Amazon will not be involved with the sale, the Post reports.